As many as 5,000 staff of Lush Australia are owed money, with a $2 million backpay scheme announced by the company today.
This follows the discovery of 'serious payroll system errors' reaching back as far as 2010 when Modern Awards were introduced.
“We are deeply sorry to our valued staff and customers that we’ve failed to uphold the values that we have always believed in and the high standards that we’ve always sought to achieve,” Lush Australia director Peta Granger said.
“This resulted from a very serious failure on our part to upgrade our internal systems. We should have had far more respect for our people’s pay and upgraded our payroll infrastructure to keep up with the growth of our business.
“We would never knowingly under pay. This was not deliberate. It goes against everything we value and believe in, and we are so sorry to have let our staff down in this way.
“Whether it’s $1 or $1000, we are committed to connecting with every employee who’s been affected by our mistake."
The company is hopeful that a review of payment systems will be complete by December, with eight years of payroll to be re-run following the error.
The back-payments will include interest, with it estimated that some employees were short by as much as $5,000 to $10,000.
Anyone who was an employee of Lush in this period is encouraged to get in touch and register their details online to check if they are owed money.